Feeling Down? 10 Thinking Patterns That Can Make You Depressed

Feeling Down

The past couple of months have not been my best.

I lost my brother unexpectedly and tragically, and a few days later my father-in-law passed away.

Around the same time, there were some other family events that were upsetting, stirring up painful and difficult memories.

More recently, I slipped and fell on a sheet of ice, breaking my wrist on my dominant hand. For a writer and blogger, this has been a challenging setback to say the least.

Going through this series of unfortunate events has taken a toll on my usual upbeat emotional state. Of course, it's normal to grieve the loss of people you love, but I found myself sinking into a low level depression.

My mind kept latching on to painful thoughts and memories, and the more I looped these thoughts, the worse I felt.

It was as though the entire focus of my perceptions about life had shifted. All of the positive, good things about my life (and there are so many) receded into the background, and every possible negative belief and fear was spotlighted and magnified.

Fortunately, I was aware enough of what was happening that I took action -- finding someone to talk to, getting more exercise, meditating, and most importantly, becoming more aware of my negative thoughts and how they were impacting me.

In my efforts to recalibrate my thoughts and emotions, I discovered a book that I can't believe I hadn't run across earlier in my life. It's called Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy, by David Burns, MD. Whether you are feeling down and depressed right now, or you want to learn some great skills to prevent depression in the future, this book needs to be on your "must read" list.

One of the most enlightening parts of Dr. Burns book is his explanation of the various negative thinking patterns, or "cognitive distortions" as he calls them, that lead you down a mental rabbit hole toward despair, anxiety, and hopelessness.

If you are feeling down, review these 10 negative thinking patterns to see if you might be trapped by one or more of them:

(more…)

How To Find A Career You Love in 2017

Career You Love

If I had gone another year doing the same thing, I think I would have chewed my foot off. That’s how I was feeling during the fall of 2008 when my oldest child was entering her senior year of high school. I’d spent the last several years supporting her dream to become a ballet dancer,…  Continue Reading

Procrastination Help: A 12-Step Recovery Program For Taking Action

Procrastination Help

“Procrastination is like a credit card: it’s a lot of fun until you get the bill.” ~Christopher Parker We all procrastinate. I procrastinated starting this post. I checked my emails, looked at Facebook, filled my coffee cup, and got something to eat. In this age of constant distractions, we are tempted to procrastinate more than…  Continue Reading

Reach Your Personal Goals With These 21 Power Habits

Personal goals

Here’s the thing: the most successful people have defined their personal goals and have developed positive daily habits to help them reach these goals. They don’t wait for life to present them with opportunities for success. They create opportunities and expect success. They have a vision, and they’ve plotted out the daily, weekly, and monthly…  Continue Reading

How to Make Good Habits Stick: 7 Secrets From Research

Have you ever wondered why some people seem to get so much done? When they say, ”I’m going to…” start exercising, eat healthy, get organized, read more, etc., you know that they’re going to make it happen. But when you try to go after similar goals, it’s a different story. You might be able to…  Continue Reading

8 Ways To Cope In Abusive Relationships

Abusive Relationships

You can’t believe you’re in this situation. How did it happen? Everything was so great in the beginning. You were so in love. You were such a great couple together. But then things started to change. The cruel comments. The controlling behaviors. The subtle threats. The one person in the world who is supposed to love…  Continue Reading

New Book Release: How to Recognize the Patterns of Narcissism, Manipulation, and Control

Signs of Emotional Abuse

New Book Release Today:  Signs of Emotional Abuse: How to Recognize the Patterns of Narcissism, Manipulation, and Control in Your Love Relationship Do you know the signs of emotional abuse in a relationship? Do you wonder if your partner’s behavior is acceptable or normal? You may not have a black eye. You haven’t been pushed…  Continue Reading

Freelance Writing Jobs: How To Start And Where To Find Lucrative Gigs

Freelance Writing Jobs

Do you love to write? Do you wish you could write more? Would you like to get paid for your writing? If you answered “yes” to some or all of these questions, here’s one more for you: what’s been holding you back? For a long time, I didn’t think of myself as a “writer.” Sure,…  Continue Reading